^OlyCap letter to PT Leader, Jan 26, 2011

As the Executive Director of Olympic Community Action Programs (OlyCAP), I am writing to encourage the community’s support of Jefferson Transit Proposition 1.

I ask for this support knowing that affordable transportation is critical for individuals and families needing to retain their employment and access services during this recession.  As fuel prices continue to exceed $3.00 per gallon, more low-income folks are turning to Jefferson Transit as an economic lifeline.  Many of our elderly neighbors rely on Dial A Ride to get to medical appointments and even grocery shopping; we cannot leave them to simply fend for themselves.

We know that the ridership is growing – particularly among people of limited mobility, commuters, seniors, students and commuters.  One of the most frequent requests we receive at OlyCAP is for assistance in providing bus passes for folks relying on transit services to get to work.  Passage of Proposition 1 is critical to enable people to continue to maintain employment. 

Jefferson Transit appears to be working diligently to manage their costs and retain services.  For example, they recently concluded negotiation of a labor agreement that will help control personnel costs and continually evaluate their route structure to maintain the highest levels of service at the lowest cost.

At OlyCAP we have already felt the results of cutbacks in support for essential services and we know how much this affects our friends and neighbors in the community.  Transportation is a service we simply cannot afford to lose. 

Nobody likes taxes; and, like you,  I want mine to go to services that are absolutely necessary. It is also the case that these taxes tend to fall most heavily on low-income residents, but in this case these are the very people most frequently using the services.  Vote Yes on Jefferson Transit Proposition 1.

Timothy Hockett, Executive Director
Olympic Community Action Programs